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Showing posts from November, 2005

Last Full Day In-Country . . . Our Family

These believers, our fellow Christians here in this country that I cannot name--they are our family. They are being persecuted for their faith. Members of our family are going to prison, being beaten, being rejected by family and loved ones, and some have even been put to death, because of their faith. What are we going to do for our family? The Bible says we are all one body because we worship one Lord. The believers here, they are our flesh and blood, they are our family. We cannot neglect the struggles and plight of our family here. What are we going to do for them? PRAY First and foremost, we must commit to keep them in our prayers. We must pray for their protection, for their safety from persecution and the secret police. We must commit to pray that their lives and families would be blessed, that they would have everything they need to read their nation for Christ. We can also pray for this closed country, that the hearts and minds of the leaders will be opened so that th

Nap Time, Again. Day Four In-country

Today I joined my brothers and sisters here, and caught a few winks with them during nap time. Then the brother next to me starting snoring and woke me up, oh well. There is a sister here who was beat up by the secret police. They knew she was going to this secret location for this training, and they were trying to get her to tell them where it was. She refused, and was roughed up for her defiance. Also, it seems that every pastor I meet here has been jailed often more than once, and still they are faithful. I am teaching in a "safehouse" in the city. Some of the students have come from far away and they stay here during this week of teaching. Some live in this city and commute. We all arrive in the morning. This morning I was picked up by a different driver at a different location, and we took a different route to get here. We have prayer and praise and worship, then I start teaching. We take a mid-morning break and we also take the lunch time/nap time break. Nap

Nap Time . . . Day Three In-country, First Day Teaching

As I write this, everyone else is sleeping. We ate lunch, and now everyone is taking a nap. They are sound asleep, a few of the students are even snoring. My ride picked me up at 8:00 this morning. We joined the throngs of motor bikes and scooters during the Monday morning rush hour. We arrived at our location about thirty minutes later. I am teaching in a closed room, in the rear of a someone's house. All the windows are closed and curtains drawn. For security reasons, I am not allowed to step outside until the teaching day is over. I am so humbled to be teaching these believers. They look to me like I am some kind of expert, when they are an example to me. Their faith comes with a high cost. Going to church is not just a quick Sunday drive away. Several of the students in this class are serving as pastors, and some of those pastors have been imprisoned. These students are very serious about reaching their country for Christ. They are in the midst of a revolution. T

Day One In-Country

The first day in this country that I cannot name. I am in one of the largest cities in this place. So many cities in this part of the world I can only describe using superlatives. This place is so this . . . or there are so many . . . It is on of the most unique cities I have ever visited in the world. I have read about this place for many years, I am now here seeing this place with my own eyes. I found a free wireless network in a coffee shop. Their connection is very fast, and they are just two blocks from my hotel. Needless to say I will be visiting here quite often over the next week. Met with our contacts here, to organize the week's schedule. I will be teaching several leaders of their work here. I need to meet my driver in a different place each morning. Fortunately, since I have dark hair and brown skin, I do not have to wear a disguise when I travel to the teaching place. Other Westerners who come to teach must sear sunglasses, long sleeves, and wear a big hat.

Tomorrow I Go

I think I have everything ready for my trip to the closed/restricted country I mentioned in a previous post. I have removed anything in my bag, wallet, or luggage that could suggest that I am a missionary (business cards, magazines, etc.), and I have packed clothes that do not have a Christian theme, like a Camp Sonshine t-shirt. I am bringing only one Bible, and my Bible school teaching materials are gift wrapped. I am told this is not overkill, and that this country is officially very hostile to any kind of missionary activity, even the mere suggestion. I still find it hard to fathom that in this day and age there is still such a country that oppresses and persecutes the Christian church. Now some would say that this nation is a sovereign nation, and it has the right to conduct its internal affairs as they see fit, without foreign intervention. Bull. Oppressing a group of people simply because they are Christians is unlawful and ungodly. It is my privilege to be going to such

Worldview Changed

I was talking with G, one of kids who comes to Sonshine Center, the other day. G is about 14 years old. He has recently given his life to the Lord, opening up his heart to accept Jesus as his Lord and savior. His home situation is the pits. He lives in one of the poorest slums in the city. His mom is involved in various illegal and immoral activites, so he really does not like going home. Jesus Christ and the Sonshine Center ministry are the only bright spots in his day. He also helps Chris with the preschool as a paid employee, and he is doing a great job. He has a wonderful way with children, teaching and nurturing them. I told him there might be a future in the education field for him, that he should look into on going to school to one day be a teacher. He told me that he would rather be a missionary. He told me he wants to share with others about the love of Jesus Christ, and maybe one day go to another country as a missionary. A year ago when I met G he was confused, ad